Middleton sees no pie in the face for E.D. Smith

E.D. Smith and Sons, the Winona, Ont.-based maker of jam and pie filling, is being sold to TreeHouse Foods, Inc., of Illinois, for $217 million, plus almost $100 million in debt to be assumed, wrote the Hamilton Spectator June 26. "Canada represents a whole new market for TreeHouse, so they very much value the capabilities and expertise that come…in the form of E.D. Smith employees," said acting president Martin Thrasher.

That has the ring of truth for Alan Middleton, marketing professor at York University’s Schulich School of Business. "Thank goodness the buyer is Tree House and not a (hedge fund) because TreeHouse will want it for its products and capabilities," he said. "I’d rather it was another food company than (a hedge fund). There’s a better shot at keeping it going now than with any other kind of acquirer."

Nurses’ union head keeps up the attack on Monahan

For Patrick Monahan, dean of York’s Osgoode Hall Law School, to suggest that the Supreme Court of Canada’s Bill 29 ruling will make it harder for governments to restructure public health care is spurious, wrote Debra McPherson, president of the BC Nurses’ Union in The Vancouver Sun June 26. [McPherson was responding to Monahan’s comments published in the Sun June 20.] To suggest this will facilitate a greater market for private health care is even more ludicrous, she wrote. Governments retain broad powers to restructure health care. For example, recent health care innovations – in British Columbia and elsewhere in Canada – have shown that surgery waiting times can be reduced significantly within public health care facilities, without access to the types of private for-profit schemes which were defended by the same Monahan when he appeared before the Supreme Court in the Chaoulli case.

Foundation president featured in fundraising supplement 

In March 2007, Paul Marcus, the founding president & CEO of the York University Foundation, became the second Canadian ever to receive the Association of Fundraising Professionals International’s prestigious Community Counselling Service Award for Outstanding Fundraising Professional, said a supplement on fundraising in The Globe and Mail June 26.

The York team has implemented an innovative model for university fundraising in Canada. In the past five years, revenue and pledges have more than doubled and the number of donors has increased by more than 70 per cent, the feature said. York recently launched the “York to the Power of 50” fundraising campaign to celebrate the university’s 50th anniversary in 2009. The campaign aims to raise $200 million and already has $125 million towards its goal.

Former York board member Roy Bennett remembered

Roy Bennett helped his buddies set up the "Friday Night Poker Club" while attending North Toronto Collegiate Institute in 1945. He would continue to attend its monthly sessions for more than 60 years, wrote The Globe and Mail June 26 in an obituary of the former York University Board of Governors member (1974-1987) . During that time, he rose through the ranks of the Ford Motor Co. of Canada to become its president at age 42. But he never abandoned the regular poker-and-beer nights with his old friends, many of whom also became business leaders.

Ken Harrigan, who followed Bennett as president of Ford Canada, said his predecessor’s main contribution was convincing government officials in Ottawa to negotiate a free-trade auto pact with Washington. The Canada-United States Automotive Agreement, signed in 1965, allowed free movement across the border of vehicles from Big Three auto plants in both countries. For Canada, this meant lower car prices and an increase in Canadian production, which created new jobs.

Roy Frederick Bennett was born in Winnipeg on March 18, 1928. He died at his Toronto home of bladder cancer on June 4, 2007. He was 79.